The Lizard Lounge Way: Spring merchandising -- out with the old, in with the new

If you want your customers to feel good about spring and buying new products, you have to inspire them with creative merchandising in fresh, bright colors. The Lizard Lounge team has four great tips with superb visuals to help SNEWS readers navigate their way.
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Welcome to the The Lizard Lounge Way, a regular merchandising column in SNEWS®. Each month, the Lizard Lounge team -- Kelsie Morrow, store manager and a Portland Art Institute professor of merchandising, Shelby Coral, head men's visual merchandiser, and Jolie Giese, the chief merchandising officer for Horny Toad, Nau and the Lizard Lounge -- bring our readers an inside look at their merchandising laboratory. Packed with visuals, there’s something in every column, even for the most experienced merchandising eye. 

Thank goodness for spring! After being cold and gray all winter (in much of the country), it's time to pack up the winter blahs and think fresh bright colors. Your store and merchandising will greatly influence your consumer’s shopping habits.

The goal is to inspire the shopper and reinforce bright, happy spring-like images -- think of the “Climb Every Mountain” scene from the movie, “The Sound of Music.”

Out with the old, in with the new. Integrate new items in and make sure that the old items are appropriately marked down or on promotion. After all, spring is about rejuvenation!

Become a storyteller. Have a clear vision of your spring style and communicate that to your customers. Every table is a new discovery of items that they need and want. Your buys should be reflective of the transition in season and weather. Spring is a shoulder season, so make sure there is some depth of layers to the merchandising. Coordinate your theme in your advertising and store signage, so you have a clear message and consistency in your communication.



A pair of shoes and a bag among clothes -- going shopping.



Shoes, bags, shirts and jackets -- perfect for traveling.



Clothing and merchandising that uses the visual hook of spring showers.

Movable merchandise. Spring is about change, and you can’t keep merchandise in the same place for too long. Flip the selling floor around every season for a refreshing new look and make sure the first few tables in the entry area are re-merchandised every few weeks. Even your best-selling table in the same spot will begin to look tired. Like they say on the dance floor … move it! Consider switching up your departments, too, especially if you see one department trending down. Thoughtfully walk through your store and make sure there are no hidden areas, slow-moving product areas, dirty corners or missed merchandising opportunities. Remember that “comfortable” is another word for boredom, and a little added effort to move things around can go a long way.

Plan your future using your history. Remember to reflect on what worked and what didn’t from last spring. Keep a journal that tracks your spring sales and trends -- snap a few pictures to keep a visual record. Spring sales are tricky, and the weather is changing, so it’s important to know your environment and your customers’ needs. Incorporate the ideas and events that worked last year and build on those successes.

About Lizard Lounge

The Lizard Lounge is a retail clothing store created to be a third place to go other than home or work. A place to relax, have a good cup of coffee, see the work of a local artist, listen to live music, access free Internet or play a game of ping-pong. No pressure, good service and great clothes on one hand, with beer, coffee and good music on the other. Live. Work. Play. Lounge. To find out more, visit www.LizardLoungePDX.com.

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